Places covered: Gyeongbokgong, Samcheongdong, Bukchon Hanok, Gangnam, Sinsa, Namsan Tower.
I came back from Seoul last Sunday and some of the places have started to fade from my memory. It must be Soju washing off my memory! Fyi, in Seoul, soju is KRW1,500 (SG$1.82) per bottle. They clearly advocate drunkenness as a way of life.
On Day 2 we have the full squad ready to conquer the city! First stop is the mandatory touristy place for every first timer – Gyeongbokgong Palace. I’ve been to this palace more times that I care for and I’m not a fan of palaces but if it’s your first time in Seoul, then you might want to visit at least one of the top 4 palaces in the city. We went during the hottest week in Seoul and we were sweating buckets. Still, the girls managed to take really good shots.
2nd Stop – Samcheongdong
I really love Samcheongdong neighborhood. It’s tradition-meets-hipster kind of neighborhood. I visited Samcheongdong on my every trip to Seoul and I can’t stop admiring the many beautiful cafes, quaint little shops along the stretch. We didn’t have the luxury of time on this trip, so we only walked till we found the stairs that lead to Bukchon Hanok. But before that we had lunch at one of the Korean restaurants that serves yummy mussels rice and plenty of side dishes, and dessert time at Osulloc Tea House. I recommend getting their Green Tea Milk Spread to bring back as souvenirs for your loved ones.
3rd Stop – Bukchon Hanok
Here’s a place that every instagram loving girl have to visit, the mecca of OOTD in Seoul. There are a few traditional houses in Seoul but Bukchon Hanok is my favorite because it’s an actual residence and not staged.
4th Stop – Apgujeong Rodeo
From Bukchon, we took a cab all the way to Gangnam area. There was a jam and the journey was about 30 minutes to get there. The bride was looking for a Chanel bag which turns out to have been reserved across all Korea, and we bumped into someone we knew from Jakarta at the Galleria Department Store. What are the chances? From Apgujeong Rodeo we walked all the way to Apgujeong Station and then took the subway to head to Sinsa.
5th Stop – Sinsa
Our initial plan was to eat and shop at Sinsa-dong but we were running out of time so we decided to just eat at the famous Ganjang Gejang Alley (Soycrab Alley). We went by the bride’s friend recommendation and tried Prosoycrab Restaurant. It is the first building seen at the alley and based on the exterior, it looks like a legit place.
We ordered total 6 crab items for the 8 of us as the server keep insisting that the portions are small and we should order more, but they weren’t and we definitely order way more than what we should have. We were clueless what kind of crab we ordered and as it turns out, the famous soy crab is actually raw crab! It’s my first time eating raw crab. It tasted like raw scallop which is not my thing but I guess some people might fancy it. The bill came up to about KRW60,000/pax (SG$75), it’s a little pricey for us considering we didn’t really enjoy but for it was worth the experience. Just be mindful that you don’t order too much, and know what you’re getting if you’re there.
6th Stop – Namsan Tower (almost)
From Sinsa, we head back to Myeongdong and walked towards the Namsan Tower elevator. Unfortunately there was a long queue for the cable car and the bride isn’t fond of heights. I’ve been there once and unless you’re a huge Kdrama fans, you’re not missing much not going there. So we went back down and head back to the hotel.
The night ended with the girls camping at my room, eating Jajjangmyeon from delivery and drinking soju. Still can’t get over how cheap soju is. The bride got pretty wasted with just SG$5 of alcohol! and that Jajjangmyeon was so comforting to our soul. A perfect ending for the night.